Beating death victim's family sues woman's treatment center



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NAMPA, Idaho (AP) — The family of a woman who was beaten to death in October has filed a lawsuit against the treatment center where the killing occurred.

Linda Westmoreland's daughters, Amanda Ingram and Stormy Dye, filed the lawsuit against Port of Hope, an alcohol and substance abuse treatment center in Nampa, alleging that the facility failed to keep Westmoreland safe, The Idaho Press-Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/2brgC2N ) on Friday.

The lawsuit was filed against Port of Hope Centers Inc. in April and Port of Hope responded to the women's legal complaint in June, denying negligence and accusations of wrongdoing.

Kaya Teton is accused of beating Westmoreland, 52, to death in October with a metal bathroom railing. The two were roommates.

Teton has been held in custody undergoing treatment since June after being declared unfit to stand trial for now but still faces a charge of first-degree murder.

The lawsuit says Westmoreland felt unsafe being housed with Teton, who was at Port of Hope under a U.S. Department of Justice order following a 2014 federal conviction for assaulting a Fort Hall Correctional Center officer.

The lawsuit claims Port of Hope failed to take appropriate action after Westmoreland voiced her concerns.

It also claims that Teton removed the metal railing from the bathroom before Westmoreland's death and that Port of Hope staff took the pipe from Teton and reinstalled it instead of installing a replacement that could not have been used as a lethal weapon.

The lawsuit is asking for damages of $1 million for each daughter and $5,000 for counseling, funeral and memorial services.

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Information from: Idaho Press-Tribune, http://www.idahopress.com

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The Associated Press

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